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Proof of work

Another alternative to yesterday’s post about essentially the "proof of stake” (or proof of influence) system used by physical laws to redistribute matter is the idea that those who work the hardest succeed most in acquiring the things they’re after, or in other words, proof of work.

I realize I may be applying bizarre personifications, or in this case machinifications, to the concept of a “sentient’ universe. This whole set up, including the environment, is ultimately fictional. But I think it’s sort of up for grabs, so it’s fun to fantasize about the different realities we may be living under. With the advent of immersive computing and VR, theories about living in a simulation took on a resolved new credence, and endless theories of the true nature of our reality began to bubble. I don’t fully subscribe to any one particular reality, because it’s impossible to know for sure, but for sure something’s up. This existence is far too suspect.

Proof of work is sort of the generally accepted model by which one succeeds, and includes laborious studying, practicing, perfecting, and specializing. The radius of your physical and social influence is not a factor, or if it were, applying work towards it would be a feasible solution. I do still largely believe in hard work, but one could easily summon countless counterexamples which prove that influence is more important than work. A combination of both (and probably billions of other factors) is most likely at play.

And while we’re using “decentralized consensus” analogies, it’s fun to appreciate just how reflective the workings of a blockchain are to our invented world, namely in that truth is up for vote. And once a group have established a chain of truths, piled on to with influence and work, it becomes ridiculously hard to challenge that reality. Did you know that, record has it, Jesus’s divinity was decided by a council? According to this blockchain, Jesus had been a well respected man, but a mere mortal. Then, in AD 325, the Roman Emperor Constantine organized a meeting named the First Council of Nicaea, where it was decided, for the purpose of gaining a populist political advantage, that Jesus would ascend to divine status, and any mention of his mortality would be immediately scrubbed from the record. Mary Magdalene, who is by this record in fact the wife of Jesus and of royal bloodline, was at once defamed as a prostitute.

I don’t know nearly enough about this topic to have a stake in it, but it’s unbelievably fascinating that a decision agreed upon by a group of hooded figures would so fundamentally and irreversibly shape the next two thousand years of human history. We’ve just been piling blocks of truth on to that aboriginal block set by impossibly unprescient human hands. Two thousand years later, it would require exorbitant amounts of energy to fork from that chain of reality.


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